Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Book Buzz & Giveaway: Dracula: The Wild and Wanton Edition by Lucy Hartbury

Lucy Hartbury (a.k.a. Lucy Oliver)  released Dracula: The Wild and Wanton Edition, Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 last fall and today I'm featuring Vol. 1.  Woot.  If there's one thing I already love about it, it's the fact that it's a spin-off of the classic, Dracula.  With NBC's Dracula season coming to a close, Lucy's take on the wild, wanton side of Dracula, should be a great alternative for those classically/wantonly inclined.  Take a look at the synopsis below:
Solicitor Jonathon Harker is lucky to escape with his life after he is duped into visiting Dracula’s castle. But while recovering from his ordeal, he doesn't realize that his enemy is travelling to England, where his young wife-to-be and her friend, Lucy, reside. When Lucy is struck down by an unknown illness that takes a sinister turn, her friend and doctor, John Seward, is forced to call in his old teacher, Van Helsing, to solve the mystery. Van Helsing's horrifying conclusions throw them all into a desperate battle against one of man’s most cunning and terrifying foes: Count Dracula.

Always a spicy novel, this version includes scenes that Victorian prudery stopped Bram Stoker from writing himself. Have you ever wondered what really happened in the castle between Jonathon Harker and Dracula’s women? Or about the doomed relationship between Arthur and Lucy? Here is the famous horror classic revealed in all its sensual glory.

Now that sounds hot, huh?  Cue in the visual of Keanu Reeves as Jonathon Harker bitten and enthralled by the Dracula's vampire harem.  Remember that?  Oh yeah.  Well, nothing gets book minions more exited than a giveaway.  And my Free Sh** Fairy threatened negotiated with Lucy to graciously donate one e-book of Dracula: The Wild and Wanton Edition, Vol. 1 to one (1) lucky winner.  Love that Fairy!  And Lucy too, of course.

To enter, please fill out the information below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for entering!  If you don't want to wait, get your copy of Dracula: The Wild and Wanton Edition, Vol. 1 here.  Oh, and you can Lucy at the following online hot spots.   




Mina B.  

Friday, January 17, 2014

Friday Mashup: Fitz and the Tantrums, Friday Flix & Fred

Happy Friday!  Aren't you happy the week's almost over?  I am.  There's a few things that I'm obsessed about this week other than my family, work, Conan O'Brien or my manuscript.  And so I thought I'd share my obsessions this week.    

Fitz and the Tantrums

As I go through the projects I'm working on I can't help but relate to this video by Fitz and the Tantrums.  In their Walker video, this guy is at the DMV and bless him because we all know how maddening that can be.  To be honest though, when I first saw this, I said to myself, "Oh, he must be writing a novel."  Hehe.  Am I right?  Anyway, I really enjoy this band, the video and the song.  You'll have to watch the video on YouTube since it's restricted content here.

Friday Flix

Watch Hansel and Gretel Witch Hunters on NetFlix!

This movie didn't review that well.  In fact, Rotten Tomatoes gave it a 1 star rating.   LOL!  Now I've learned to not read too much into these types of reviews.  Last January this movie released in the US and made a disappointing $55M.  Interestingly enough, the movie then released internationally and was reported to gross a whopping $177M in other countries.  Worldwide, the film made over $225M.  See all the fascinating facts here.   And with numbers like that, you knew there would be a sequel, right?  Yup...see this article from last year mentioning movie number two.

I find it intriguing that even though a movie isn't a hit in the US, it can still be a sensation worldwide.  Have you thought about this perspective with respect to books?  Do you have a favorite book that hasn't made it over to the US yet?  Or if you're an author, are your books doing better in the US as opposed to other countries?

On another note, if you're interested in reading the real-deal, check out my Creepy Classic review of Grimms' Fairy Tales: Hansel and Gretel. Have you read this classic?

Fridays with Fred

Its been some time since I've posted an image of Fred.  I'm sorry to say this but Fred's getting older and is a bit grouchy in his senior years. :(  He has issues with his back legs and frankly I try not to bother him anymore.  Anyway, the kids were playing with the dinosaurs one day and I snapped this one of Fred walking with the dinos.  Can you feel the ground shaking?

Fredrannosaurus Rex

Did you watch the video?  Are you a fan of Hansel and Gretel?  Do ya miss Fred at all?

Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Mina B. 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Cover Reveal: Chasing Anya by J.L. Campbell

Today I'm featuring fellow author friend, J.L. Campbell's latest romance book with a beautiful cover reveal, Chasing Anya. From the eclectic taste of the excerpt below it promises to be unique, hot and full of mystery.  But first, take a look at the cover and book blurb below:

Been there. Done that.

Feisty and independent, Anya Davies lives by her own rules. The one thing she’s hell-bent on avoiding is a conventional relationship. Nor is she interested in romance, thanks to her abusive ex who refuses to stay in the past. The second complication in her life is a secret that condemns her to constant guilt and a solitary life. A series of near misses and escalating threats are a third and worrying factor. Only a special man would understand or live with Anya’s challenges and demands.

Casual not having that.

Enter Christophe Mondesir. Two years ago, Anya dumped him without explanation. An accidental meeting shoots Anya back on Christophe’s radar. He refuses to be denied and plans to breach the fortress Anya has built around her heart—if she’ll commit to more than a casual liaison. He’s also determined to find out what she’s hiding. That’s if the stalker who’s after Anya doesn’t end her life first. 

Genre: Romance, Women's Fiction
Content/Theme(s): Sexual Content (not graphic), Post Abortion Syndrome, Relationships, Spousal Abuse,
Release Date: January 13, 2014
Publisher: The Writers' Suite

 photo 85c6c375-f71a-468a-ad8c-b8d2b30deb99_zps986ff285.jpg

He stood before her, pressing kisses to her neck. Then his lips covered hers. Soft. Persuasive.

She resisted him at first, but the memory of his lovemaking warmed her blood and she relaxed against him. The unknown word he’d spoken came to mind and she twisted away from him. “I’m not so sure I should let you touch me, ’specially since I don’t know what you said earlier. What was that anyhow?”

“I said you should stop talking like a slut.”

She mashed his toes with her foot. “How dare you talk to me like that?”

“Ouch! If you insist on treating sex as if it is some sort of pill—”

“If you were sensitive to my needs, I wouldn't have to resort to asking for sex.”

He narrowed his eyes. “You know what? I’m going to give you what you want.”

That said, Christophe pressed his lips to hers, forcing her mouth open. She fought him, but this time he ignored her attempts to escape.

The intensity of his kiss frightened her. His grip on her arms was too tight and she felt suffocated by his strength. “No, Christophe, I—”

His hand glided under her shirt and the words lodged in her throat. She cast aside her objections, swept away by the fire his touch lit on her insides.

They landed on her bed, struggling to free themselves of their clothing. Minutes later, Christophe reduced her to an orgasmic shudder.

Then they started over.

When they were satisfied, she panted against his chest.

Christophe eased away from her and rolled onto his back to stare into a corner of the room.

Now what was wrong with him? She raised herself up on her elbow. “What’s bugging you now?”

It took him a while to look her in the eyes. “D’you realize I just raped you?”

She almost giggled. “Well, it was the best rape I ever had.”

He sighed. “I’m serious. You said no, and I didn’t listen.”

He murmured something she didn’t hear and rolled onto his side, away from her.
Anya stared at a mole on his shoulder, unable to believe what she was seeing and hearing. Was he serious? Wasn’t she supposed to be the basket case?

She scratched at the skin around the cast. It was itching like hell lately.

Christophe got up and went into the bathroom. The toilet flushed and she waited for him to come back to bed. Instead, he got a pair of jeans from the cupboard and pulled them on, along with a tee-shirt.

Anya gaped at him. “Where the hell d’you think you’re going?”

“Home. I need to think.”

“What d’you need to think about, Christophe?”


She yanked her shirt on and stood in front of him. “Every time I get mad and tell you to leave, you refuse to go. Now, we don’t even have a serious quarrel and you’re running away. What’s wrong with you?”

He slipped both hands in his pockets and wouldn’t look at her. “I have to go.”

Using her hand, she tipped his head so she could see his eyes.

He was in pain.

She didn’t understand what the problem was, but something had gone terribly wrong. She grabbed his arms and spoke softly to him. “Don’t walk out on me now. I don’t know what’s going on with you, or what you think you did, but I need you.”

“I’m sorry, Anya.” He stepped out of her grasp and walked away.

She sank on the bed, rubbing the frown line on her forehead. Would he be all right? Her heart rate went up and she pressed a hand to her chest. Christophe had left, but she needed to check whether he’d locked up.

The lock was engaged and she was alone in the house. She leaned against the front door, feeling as if she’d bought a bus ticket and the driver had dropped her off miles away from her destination.

Her eyes smarted, but she would not cry. While she was sure Christophe’s withdrawal was directly related to her, she sensed there were other factors at play.

If he didn’t want to talk, how could she get to the root of what was eating him?

 photo 59e824c4-9212-448b-9de2-c31e31a3a6ef_zps75626707.jpg
Image of J. L. Campbell
J.L. Campbell is a proud Jamaican, who is always on the hunt for story-making material.

She writes romantic suspense, women's fiction and young adult novels. She is the author of Anya's Wish, Chasing Anya, Contraband, Christine's Odyssey, Dissolution, Distraction, Don't Get Mad...Get Even, Retribution, Saving Sam and Hardware (written under the pen name Jayda McTyson).

Where to find JL Campbell:

Social Media
Author site:
Goodreads: JL Campbell
Twitter: @JL_Campbell
Facebook: JL Campbell
Amazon: JL Campbell

Fabulosity Reads Book Promotions is a book touring website that promotes authors and their precious works to an extensive audience using blogs, twitter, Facebook and other Social Media, with the aim of introducing them to an appreciative readership. They offer a diverse range of both complimentary and affordable products to help the reach of your book go that much further.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


Insecure Writers Support Group has returned for another year of insecurity.  A big thanks to the man who created this phenomenon,  Alex J. Cavanaugh.  This monthly meme is a great way to reflect on your writing insecurities every month so that you can toss them out and focus on the positive stuff.   If you aren't familiar with #IWSG and want to know more,  click here and check it out

Lately, I've been doing really great getting back into the swing of things.  I've been able to balance work and family nicely and do a fair amount of writing which has me extremely pleased.  Sometimes there are instances in my life where I recognize a parallel of what's happening in my writing career.  That happened to me recently and I thought I'd share it with you.

On Friday afternoons, I take my kids to the park where they meet up with their friends and play like their lives depended on it. My son has gotten into a routine where he and a handful of other boys play down and dirty football. It always starts out as touch, but then after a good hour it turns more aggressive. These 7,8, and 9-year olds are very serious about their football. It's pretty adorable to watch them call plays. One play I watched had me roaring. I watched my son who was holding the ball steady for the kicker--yeah, we all know the play and the way its supposed to go. But to my absolute shock and slight horror, I watched my son pull a Lucy. Yes, he did. And I never laughed so hard in my life--God love him.

Later I had to explain that he couldn't do that.  I explained that it was okay to be afraid but to pull away like that wasn't good.  "You have to stay tough to support your team," I said, hiding a smile.  He's getting the hang of it, and I'm supporting him along the way.  This brings me back to that parallel in my writing I mentioned.  There are two actually.  In one scenario, I am Charlie Brown, focused on my sole goal of connecting with the ball i.e. my novel and actually launching the darn thing.  Lucy represents my hurdles and the fact that they feel endless when it comes to finalizing things.  The other scenario is--I am both Charlie and Lucy and it's me that keeps screwing things up.  Yeah, it's probably the second one.  *Sigh*  

Can you relate? I find that writing these ridiculous thoughts down does help.  Thank you IWSG for all the love and support.  I saw this image and thought of you.  In case you haven't guessed, I'm good ol' Chuck and ISWG is the ultimate BFF, Snoopy.  

What type of insecurities are you faced with this month?  

Friday, January 3, 2014

Book Release: The Headhunters Race by Kimberly Afe

It's release day for Kimberly Afe's The Headhunters Race! Wahoo. Talk about a wicked cool debut novel too. Just check out the book summary below:
Book Summary
Sixteen-year-old Avene was sentenced to prison at thirteen for a crime she didn't commit. Now she has a chance to win her freedom back – if she enters the Headhunters Race. Second prize isn't so bad either, an upgrade to the Leisure Prison if you make it to the finish line. To win either prize, Avene and the other prisoners must navigate one hundred and fifty miles of dense forest, desert, and worst of all, cannibal territory.

With a mechanical collar timed to strangle the prisoners if they're not back in nine days, Avene allies herself with seventeen-year-old McCoy, another prisoner that insists on helping her at every turn and a boy she's trying hard not to fall for. Together they battle nature, other prisoners, and the timed death collars to win the coveted prize. But when Avene is tested with one deadly conflict after another, she realizes there is more at stake than winning her freedom – first she has to survive.

Find it on Amazon here.

Excerpt from The Headhunters Race 
(This excerpt is from the day the race starts and Avene is getting ready.)

Hours later, when the birds start chirping, I know it's almost time to wake up. I get out of bed and change into my special clothes. The ones I've been saving for this day: a sturdy pair of jeans and a man's blue flannel shirt. Underneath I wear my white fitted tee-shirt, depicting a crudely drawn skull. I added the crossbones bearing a set of daggers with a nearly dried-up marker I found a year ago. It represents my mantra for the race: stay away from me or I'll kill you.

I tie my sheath around my thigh, re-lace my boots with longer and sturdier cord I found on a pair of men's boots in the goodie two shoes clothing pile, and then gulp down several handfuls of water. I wipe the droplets from my mouth while I pace like a caged panther. A few minutes later I slug down another five handfuls before I remember to fill my water bottle.

Zita leans up on her elbow. "You're sure you want to do this?"

"I have to, Zita. It's our only way out. The only way we'll be free."

She throws off her cover and leaps to her feet. "Well, we better do something with that hair. They'll start calling the prisoners out soon."

Zita snatches our slop container from the table. She fills it with dirt from the corner and mixes in a bit of water. "I'm not sure how well this will work," she says, stirring it with her finger. "Sit."

I sit on the ground cross-legged at her feet. She kneels beside me, takes a small lock of hair, and rubs mud all through the strands. The stringy tresses stick together, cold and wet against my cheek. After one side of my head is finished, she steps back and surveys her work. "Nope, this isn't working. Your roots are still too light."

"Why don't you wash her whole head in it?" says McCoy.

I stiffen. Leave it to him to think of dunking my whole head in mud.

"You're a genius!" says Zita. She grabs my arm and pulls me to my feet. "Help me," she says to McCoy and I cringe at the thought of him touching my head when I'm a direct competitor. He might send his ninja blade across my neck.

He grabs the sink, half full of water, water I need to drink, and dumps three quarters of it into the corner. "Hey, I need to drink that!" I say.

"You can drink ours," says McCoy.

Right. I'm not going to drink theirs. He'd love that. Especially now that he's going to have to hunt on his own and the only way he knows how is by poaching off me.

Zita stops short of pouring in handfuls of dirt. Instead she goes to the fire pit and scoops out gobs of ash. She swishes it around with her fingers, stares at it like she's not satisfied, and goes ahead and dumps in a handful of dirt anyway. "Okay, bend over, girl."

I lean over the sink while Zita pours the murky mixture over my hair and massages it in. It's gritty and gross.

"Hand me that old shirt in the corner," says Zita.

I'm looking upside down at McCoy while he retrieves the old shirt she uses as her dust rag. She wrings out my hair and then places the shirt over top and squeezes out the excess water. "I wish I had a comb," she says, flipping my head up and steering my behind back to the ground.

"It's okay, I can use my fingers," I say.

McCoy dashes into their room. "Boom has one, hold on."

I lean my head back in defeat. He's determined to help me, to make me feel obligated to help him in return, but his niceties aren't going to work on me.

Want to win a copy?
Kimberly has put together a wicked giveaway.  Check out the amazing prizes and enter to win today!  

Author Kimberly Afe

Kimberly is the mother of two awesome kids, wife of the nicest man in the world, and her dog's best friend. She works by day and writes middle grade and young adult science fiction and fantasy novels in her spare time. She lives with her family in the beautiful Sonoran Desert.

You can Kimberly online at the following places.
Website   Goodreads   Twitter   Facebook   Blog   

Love that excerpt!  The Headerhunters Race sounds awesome, huh?  
Be sure and get your copy today!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2014: Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, everyone.  I hope you all had a wonderful holiday.  2013 ended too quickly, huh?  It did for me too.  Have you created any resolutions yet?  I decided to forgo the resolutions and focus on my goals.  My goals are ones that I push for every day so having a resolution doesn't make much sense to me.  

Instead of a resolution, I decided to create a theme.  My theme this year is...

How's that sound for a theme?  Be wicked in all things you do, my friend.  I've finally had some time to work on my projects, and the theme fits my mood.  You know what I mean?  

Anyway, I searched for some inspiration and found these three things that have sparked my wicked mood.

1:  A cool Shakespeare quote...

2.  A wicked meme because wouldn't it be cool to fly?

3.  The wickedly famous: Maleficent coming in 2014.

I can't wait for this movie.  The laugh at the end is the bomb.  

Hey, that's my theme for 2014, and I'm sticking to it.  Are you excited about the New Year?  Do you have a resolution or theme you want to share?

Have a wonderfully wicked New Year!